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Author Topic: Search, pounce and destroy  (Read 11297 times)
K1HMS
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Posts: 463




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« on: July 19, 2017, 02:08:09 PM »

On the subject of ethics and contesting: I'm new to CW, I can copy 17 wpm of clean code with a QSO rate of 29/hr and 59/hr at peaks but pile ups are impossible. Working 13 Colonies on 40m I would be working off a small pile up of 5-6 stations and another 13K station would call CQ on top me, clean out the stack like a buzz saw, and disappear until next time. It happened 4 times. With a kW and my antenna I know he could hear me, and the band was wide open.

I wouldn't think this was an acceptable approach, I'm I right? Is it common?

Over the night I did get several QRLs and a TU 73 when I replied yes. I appreciate those OMs.
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N3HEE
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« Reply #1 on: July 20, 2017, 06:14:12 AM »

No. That is not acceptable behavior or operating procedure.  Especially if he could hear you.  Maybe he couldn't hear you ?  Either way QRL ? is the right thing to do before starting up.  You can't poach someone else's pile up while they are still running the pile up.   That op should have found a clear frequency nearby and set up shop.  He would have gotten most of your pile up that way. 
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Joe
N3HEE
CW Academy Advisor (Level II)
N3QE
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Posts: 4881




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« Reply #2 on: July 20, 2017, 08:13:16 AM »

My interpretation especially if they just popped up for a few minutes then went away, it was some kind of malicious slim and not an actual 13 colonies station that stole your frequency for a few minutes. A real 13 colonies special event station would camp out for an hour to many hours on the same frequency.

Overall scope was, what, 4 times, for a few minutes each? I hope this was just a fraction of a percent of your operation and the other 99%+ percent was enjoyable for you and the guys working you. And you should think of the positive 99%+ and not the couple minutes of confusion the slim generated.

Running at a slower speed like 15-17WPM in a wide-scope event like 13 colonies actually makes a lot of sense. You wanted to cast your net as wide as possible and it sounds like you did a good job!
« Last Edit: July 20, 2017, 08:16:19 AM by N3QE » Logged
K1HMS
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Posts: 463




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« Reply #3 on: July 20, 2017, 09:40:13 AM »

Thank you for responding. I've got a lot to learn.

I'm sure it was a legit station, using the spot collector I QSYd and listened to him. He was very proficient, a new contact every 10-15 seconds. I'm sure he didn't hear me....

I've logged about 890 CW QSOs so I'm new to CW making 13K a challenge. If it is good fast code, even near the noise level, I respond quickly, get a RR, and wrap up the exchange. It's great.

As the noob I worked the less active bands where there are fewer experienced contesters and more slow code, bad no space code, very weak signals, DX calls with unfamiliar patterns or two numbers, and more folks unaware of the contest and the exchange. All creating delays and the opportunity for a SO2R working S&P on a second band to jump on top me for a minute for few extra easy points.

Often when I did respond quickly I had to send a call several times before I would get a response, a sure sign someone was running on one band and working me as a second effort.

There is also a trade where you hear a weak signal and have to decide to work it or just keep sending a CQ. I believe I tried to work too many stations that were in the noise. I got a few of them but at the expense of many stations that didn't wait around. Do you put the blinders on and maintain your QSO rate, or give the guy with a 100w and a attic dipole pleading "need NH" a chance? (Took a while but I got him).

I plan to be more proficient next year to better hold my ground but I still want to work some small stations or those just getting into CW. I liken it to driving slow on the freeway, it encourages road rage...

I got nearly 50 states, 35 QRP, 11 mobile, and over a dozen DX contacts during 13K and the best practice to date, even better than Field Day.
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N3QE
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Posts: 4881




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« Reply #4 on: July 20, 2017, 09:59:47 AM »

I'm sure it was a legit station, using the spot collector I QSYd and listened to him.

Question: was he running split? He might not have even been listening on his transmit frequency.

You mention QSY'ing, how many Hz or kHz off was he from your CQ frequency? A lot of us are very comfortable running only a few hundred Hz away from an adjacent station. But not everyone is so comfortable and it doesn't make sense to nose in so close if a space is available elsewhere. Unless there's a contest going on, there is clear space on the CW bands.

If you give us time/date/band of when you were QRM'ed I'll be glad to look at reversebeacon history and give you my opinion of what was going on at the time.

I myself have been at massive contest stations during the W1AW centennial, running as W1AW/3 MD, calling CQ on a clear band, when CWOps Wednesday night starts up and I'm completely drowned out in the mayhem. Hey, I'm part of the mayhem every Wednesday night myself, so I get it. If you are CQ'ing at 15WPM to cast a wide net, to a 35WPM guy you don't even sound like you're there, EVEN IF you're at a superstation.

Oh, and while on the subject: Spurious Emissions Band performing "My Freq": https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=KoexjENur6U
« Last Edit: July 20, 2017, 10:19:20 AM by N3QE » Logged
K1HMS
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Posts: 463




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« Reply #5 on: July 20, 2017, 11:38:10 AM »

Hi,

As for the QSY it included a band change. I would have seen a split on CW Skimmer or the waterfall and didn't. My TS-590SG BW was 200Hz.  The band was not crowded at all.

I was at 13-17 wpm and he was really fast. I could see him setting up a second receiver on a clear frequency that I happened to occupy later and quickly jumping to it periodically without checking it again. While I was loud at his QTH I did have long delays at times trying to copy slow code or weak signals. He must have been surprised when there was always a short line waiting after calling CQ once or twice.

I was surprised he always found a hand full of fast stations to work when all I was hearing was slow tortured code. I'm new and learning. It appears you receive what you send. Send 13 you will get 8-10 with a lot of agains?. I occasionally got 20+ wpm with a crisp quick exchange which was great when it happened. He pops in for less than 1 minute at 36 wpm and gets 4-5 contacts.

I've thought about SO2R but another lesson is I need to obtain a skill level where I can service the second band without much delay to either the run or S&P freq. On the receiving end while running, it isn't much fun to get a S9 clean copy and return it for the next 30 sec before getting a confirmation. This was repeated many times. Also the need to make sure  the 2nd freq remains clear between visits, a waterfall display is key for this.

I'll assume he didn't hear me and leave it at that. It is good there is a plausible explanation beyond getting hijacked. I appreciate it.

Hamilton K1HMS

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N3HEE
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« Reply #6 on: July 20, 2017, 12:43:19 PM »

I certainly didn't hear any 13C cw stations running 36 WPM !  That wouldn't make much sense to run that fast.  What was his call ?  Probably the same as yours ?  Sounds like a pirate.  They were warning of this happening on the 13C web site. 
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Joe
N3HEE
CW Academy Advisor (Level II)
K1HMS
Member

Posts: 463




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« Reply #7 on: July 20, 2017, 01:42:56 PM »

I certainly didn't hear any 13C cw stations running 36 WPM !  That wouldn't make much sense to run that fast.  What was his call ?  Probably the same as yours ?  Sounds like a pirate.  They were warning of this happening on the 13C web site.  

In the top paragraph I wrote really fast, I don't know how fast, maybe not 36, but much faster than my 17-20 wpm. Is this important?
Pirate?? Go to the 13C site, I'm on the K2K list.
What brought this on?

Hamilton K1HMS
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K3TN
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Posts: 559


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« Reply #8 on: July 21, 2017, 03:14:33 AM »

Just sounds like a lid operator. You could have tried throwing in "QRL QRL, PSE QSY" and he might have moved.

If you are interested in increasing your CW pileup skills. Morserunner is a free piece of software that lets you decide parameters like CW speed, size of pileup, conditions (QRN, QSB) and even interference from lids!

Free download here.

73 John K3TN
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John K3TN
KA3JLW
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Posts: 7




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« Reply #9 on: July 21, 2017, 06:51:45 AM »

Pirate?? Go to the 13C site, I'm on the K2K list.
What brought this on?

Hamilton K1HMS

I don't know what brings out the pirates/jammers for this event.  Probably a combination of:
- Its popularity
- Its tie to states, which is sort of a tie to Government, which gets people all riled up.

It is not particularly surprising that someone came over you going fast and loud.  We call them "Alpha Hotels" and its best just to move on. 
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K1HMS
Member

Posts: 463




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« Reply #10 on: July 21, 2017, 07:11:07 AM »

Just sounds like a lid operator. You could have tried throwing in "QRL QRL, PSE QSY" and he might have moved.

If you are interested in increasing your CW pileup skills. Morserunner is a free piece of software that lets you decide parameters like CW speed, size of pileup, conditions (QRN, QSB) and even interference from lids!

Free download here.

73 John K3TN
John,

Since this was my first real "contest" I had spent weeks with Morse Runner. It definetly sharpened my skills at copying call signs. Even with lids and everything turned on it is very sterile compared to on-air. I will continue to use Morse Runner to practice. I highly recommend it.

Thanks for the "QRL QRL PSE QSY" tip. It makes sense.
« Last Edit: July 21, 2017, 07:19:59 AM by K1HMS » Logged
K1HMS
Member

Posts: 463




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« Reply #11 on: July 21, 2017, 09:40:56 AM »

Pirate?? Go to the 13C site, I'm on the K2K list.
What brought this on?

Hamilton K1HMS

I don't know what brings out the pirates/jammers for this event.  Probably a combination of:
- Its popularity
- Its tie to states, which is sort of a tie to Government, which gets people all riled up.

It is not particularly surprising that someone came over you going fast and loud.  We call them "Alpha Hotels" and its best just to move on. 

I don't think we had a issue with pirates. K2K NH had a policy of one operator per mode per band and a on-line scheduling tool.  We kept an eye on the spot collector and monitored the band mainly to ensure we each followed the policy.  About 10 times as K2K (CW) I was challenged to prove I wasn't a pirate or they asked for my call sign. One OM was accusing me of being a pirate and would not let it go. He probably couldn't believe someone so inexperienced could be a 13C op. Our club is very inclusive. We also had a K2K/QRP (CW) on the same band. Having two CW K2Ks may have caused his suspicion. 

Plotting call signs vs freq vs time in reverse beacon network the plots look clean showing 1, 2 or 3 (SSB) of us along freq lines. If there were K2K pirates they were not on long enough to get spotted. These are automated spots and do not miss much. I don't know about the other 13C states.

I'm content the OM that dropped in on me was a SO2R and I was in his drop zone. It's not right but it is much better than being malicious. I had been there for hours and was in the spot collector. It was  a K2X making it easy via spots to QSY and listen to him. He was exceptionally good, not a second lost, Ganghis Kahn on horses. Its a contest, with speed accidents happen.

The alpha hotels were the nasty ones miffed because I took a extra 3 seconds or missed a letter in their call due to their bad fist or they waited as I worked a weak station. It is their choice to answer a CQ. In 100s of contacts there were only a dozen of these with nasty comments, holding down their key, etc. There is something ironic about being called a "no code extra" at 20 wpm...

I appreciate the help from everyone.

73 Hamilton K1HMS




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N3QE
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Posts: 4881




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« Reply #12 on: July 21, 2017, 12:23:10 PM »

Quote
We also had a K2K/QRP (CW) on the same band. Having two CW K2Ks may have caused his suspicion. 

Just my opinion, operating QRP for a special event and having two ops ID'ing differently depending on whether they are QRP or not, was not the best choice. I know some guys love their /QRP suffix, but wow.

The alpha hotels were the nasty ones miffed because I took a extra 3 seconds or missed a letter in their call due to their bad fist or they waited as I worked a weak station. It is their choice to answer a CQ. In 100s of contacts there were only a dozen of these with nasty comments, holding down their key, etc. There is something ironic about being called a "no code extra" at 20 wpm...

When you remember your special event operating, it's best to forget the few bad nuts and remember the good ones!

Thanks for getting on and making all those Q's! I betcha some of the ones in my log below, were you.

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K1HMS
Member

Posts: 463




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« Reply #13 on: July 21, 2017, 01:19:43 PM »

N3QE - You missed me. I was 20 and 40 CW between 026.0 and 039.5 but mostly 7,034.+/-.
Adding the /QRP slows down the flow, glad I didn't have to add /QRO.

Thinking about the no code extra comments it made me think about it. Back in those days you knew a KN was going to be a rough and slow novice before you decided to answered the CQ.

Today you hear a AB1XY at 20 wpm calling CQ with a Winkeyer and then end up with a first year CW novice, it could make someone little grumpy. It's no excuse to be rude, it is the way it is today.
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NO9E
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Posts: 712




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« Reply #14 on: July 24, 2017, 07:56:45 AM »

They may not have heard you. Most likely not malice, something that you will understand once you gain more experience.

I am very careful blaming others. For me, the worst case of blaming others was when in contesting my frequency was taken over many times. Turned out it was not, and the problem was K3. When interrupting canned messages by ESC, due to a glitch in firmware, occasionally K3 would change the frequency, without showing any change on the display. Pressing A>B cleared the problem. Elecraft corrected the firmware perhaps 1-2 years ago.

In general, hams are pretty good guys.

Ignacy, NO9E
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